44-Foot Boat Sunk By Modern-Day Moby Dick

Photo: Getty Images-Annabelle500

Four members of a sailing crew have survived a 10-hour ordeal at sea after a giant whale sank their boat in the Pacific Ocean, authorities say.

The group was in the midst of a three-week sailing trip from the Galapagos Islands to French Polynesia -- a 3,500-mile journey -- when their trip was cut short after just 13 days. Rick Rodriguez says he and his cohorts were making pizza when they heard a loud noise. "The second pizza had just come out of the oven, and I was dipping a slice into some ranch dressing,” Rodriguez recalls. “The back half of the boat lifted violently upward and to starboard.” After realizing the 44-foot vessel was destined to sink, the foursome piled into a lifeboat and abandoned ship, Rodriguez says.

After spending the next 10 hours trying to reach someone, Rodriguez finally heard back from an unlikely rescuer: the Rolling Stones. Not the band, but a boat owned by Geoff Stone. He picked up the crew and they're now on their way back to land, according to French Polynesia officials. “I feel very lucky, and grateful, that we were rescued so quickly,” Rodriguez says. “We were in the right place at the right time to go down.”

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